An Annual Festival in September
Celebrating Arts and Activism across Greenwich Village and the East Village.
Mark Your Calendars:
The Village Trip 2023 will take place September 8 – 24
85+ events over 17 days – stay tuned! Be there! View some highlights below.
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- Let Freedom Ring! Visions & Voices from the Great Hall – a star-studded celebration of music and civil rights to honor the 60th anniversary of the March on Washington directed by David Deblinger and Daniel Carlton
- Wonderful Town – a cabaret performance of Leonard Bernstein’s legendary Downtown musical with Jamie Bernstein, Janis Siegel, Michael Kelly and Yaron Gershovsky
- Gail Papp in conversation with George C Wolfe – Joe Papp, Shakespeare in the Park and the Public Theater
- Earth Requiem – Diana Wege’s groundbreaking interdisciplinary work with music by Eve Beglarian and Errollyn Wallen
- Neighbors, Lovers and Friends – a celebration of Village-centric composers and poets, including Victoria Bond’s centennial setting of Edna St Vincent Millay
- Jazz for Justice – featuring Albert Marques and his trio, David Amram and the Loisada Orchestra, poets Caridad de la Luz (La Bruja), Marcos de la Fuente and special guests, including Keith Lamar, live from prison
- Mazel – Yiddish classics with a downbeat to mark Rosh Hashana. With Janis Siegel, John di Martino and Cantor Daniel Kramer and friends
A celebration of Ukrainian culture on Sunday September 10
We will Celebrate Ukraine! A full program of events throughout the East Village will honour Ukraine’s rich history and culture while raising money for Drs. Irwin and Karen Redlener’s Ukraine Children’s Action Project.
There will be a sponsored Piano Play-a-Thon on the portico of St. Mark’s in the Bowery, and inside the church two classical concerts. And in the evening at Drom, Kommuna Lux, a band from Ukraine famous for its “Odessa gangsta folk” will be joined by some very special local guests.
CALL FOR ENTRIES: Framing the Village Exhibition 2023 | Portraits
Call for entries for a group exhibition of paintings, drawings, and photography of portraits depicting persons past and present who are associated with, live in, or have lived in Greenwich Village/East Village. All mediums including photography are welcome. Closing date July 30, 2023.
The exhibition is being curated by long-time Village artist Marc Kehoe.
Now available – recordings of two very special Village Trip events. Buy them for yourself or as a gift for friends and family, and help support a valuable cause while also spreading the word about The Village Trip.
Talkin' New York Folk Revival:The Village Trip Live at the Bitter End on Bandcamp
The magical closing concert from the inaugural festival. Hosted by Tom Chapin, it featured the Chapin Sisters, Diana Jones, David Massengill, Happy Traum and Village Trip Artist Emeritus David Amram performing such timeless folk classics as “Pastures of Plenty”, “City of New Orleans”. “The Water is Wide” and “Irene, Goodnight”. The line-up also features Michael Mark on bass and David Mansfield on violin, plus special guest John Heller. The recording was edited by Steve Rosenthal, whose distinguished work includes the commemorative set of Woody Guthrie: The Tribute Concerts.Buy from Bandcamp $20.
In the spirit of the great folk tradition, all the performers have generously donated their share of the proceeds from the recording to Greenwich House Music School.
From the 2022 Festival: WATCH a reading of Jack Kerouac's On the Road with music
Check out this very cool video teaser for our On the Road reading at the Strand Book Store. Produced and edited by Jordan Galland, the video captures the spirit of the star-studded reading of Jack Kerouac's classic novel directed by David Deblinger.
If you want to see the entire reading with performances by Mercedes Ruehl, Marsha Mason, Dael Orlandersmith, Kevin Corrigan, Stephanie Berry, John Ventimiglia, Jose Rivera, and John Doman, buy the recording. View the program.
THE VILLAGE TRIP 2022: Let the Good Times Roll
For a slide show with captions, click on the images
And they did, across two weeks and three weekends, Greenwich Village and the East Village – Washington Square Park to Tompkins Square Park. The Village Trip celebrated the neighborhoods, showing off not just their great legacies but also their continuing vibrancy. The spirit – artistic, activist – of which Robert Snyder, Manhattan Borough Historian, spoke of in his inaugural Village Trip lecture, titled “Global Greenwich Village,” was everywhere evident. At the Nuyorican Poets Café, where David Amram, Bobby Sanabria, Jennifer Jade Ledesna, Marcos de la Fuente and Loisaida musicians celebrated the Beats and bebop in an evening organised by Lyn Pentecost and Pepe Flores of La Sala de Pepe y Foto Espacio, the infectious joy and energy of the evening made it seem that all things are possible. As Charlie Parker said: Now is the time! Amen to that.
What Maestro Leonard Bernstein called “the infinite variety of music” was on offer: Classical and New Music at St John’s in the Village, Tenri Cultural Institute, and the Players Theater. William Anderson thoughtfully curated concerts that crossed genres, pushed boundaries, and took us on any number of stimulating journeys criss-crossing the rich musical history of the Village, East and West.
There were premières – from David Amram, Gene Pritsker and Suzanne Vega, the latter inventively paired with Composers Concordance. There was jazz in all its vibrant glory. Amram and Sanabria and a host of friends raising the roof at Joe’s Pub as they celebrated The Children of the American Bop (and Mambo) Night.
The great Janis Siegel, in another sold-out gig at Joe’s, sang an exquisite and heartfelt tribute to her beloved New York City. And of course, there was Janis and Jamie Bernstein, the Maestro’s daughter, and their friends with an exclusive and utterly enthralling evening honoring Wonderful Town, a musical set in mid-century Greenwich Village bohemia. It’s getting an Uptown transfer – need we say more!
The highlights were too numerous to mention, but for many the star-studded reading of On the Road, directed by David Deblinger of HB Studio, with live music from Jack Kerouac’s old buddy David Amram, was way up there. Questlove was in the audience! And emotions were high as we celebrated the late great Phil Ochs at a sold-out concert at the Bitter End, a club Ochs knew well and played often. Peter Yarrow was in the audience – Peter, Paul and Mary played their debut performance in the club back in 1961!
History honored, history made across a few blocks of Downtown Manhattan that have given more to the world than any other.
“I think I can speak for everyone when I say that yes, we had as much fun as it looked like we did,” said Lisa Gutkin, Klezmatics singer-songwriter and fiddler after the band’s backyard gig in Washington Square Park. “It was fabulous to see so many of our long-time fans. But also, I loved watching people who were just wandering into the Park join the dance line and go crazy. It was indeed thrilling.”
Thank you all for coming. It’s been quite a Trip! See you same time, same place next year.
And if you can, please consider making a donation so the fun and fandango, the hi-jinks and high ideals of The Village Trip, can continue. Next year will be the fifth festival – let’s make it really special.
Always remember – it takes a village!
Liz & Cliff